Drafts for the Essay concerning Human Understanding, Volume 2, Draft C is the latest volume in the Clarendon Edition of the Works of John Locke. Draft C was written in 1685 and marks a major development in the evolution of the Essay. Locke is living in exile in various places in the Netherlands, and devoting his time to working his various notes “de Intellectu Humano” into drafts for the Essay. Draft C is the only one to survive, but one can already see familiar features of the Essay. For the first time, the work is divided into books (presumably four, although the surviving manuscript contains only Books I and II); and many of the chapters will eventually find their way, often much revised, into the published Essay in 1689.
The manuscript of Draft C is held by the Morgan Library and Museum in New York. The text was written by Sylvester Brounower, Locke’s manservant and amanuensis, with considerable additions and corrections in Locke’s hand.
The present edition is the first complete transcription of Draft C. The transcription was begun by Peter Nidditch, carried on by G. A. J. Rogers, and completed by J. R. Milton. The book contains a general introduction and a textual introduction by Milton. The general introduction includes a meticulous account of the surviving evidence for Locke’s work on the “Essay de Intellectu Humano” from the end of work on Draft B in 1672 through the preparation of Draft C in 1685 to its publication in 1689, along with a description of the significant features of the draft.
Drafts for the Essay concerning Human Understanding, Volume II, Draft C is published by Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198717218. For further information, see the OUP website.
Drafts for the Essay concerning Human Understanding, Volume II, Draft C is the twentieth volume published in the Clarendon Edition of the Works of John Locke. This marks a milestone in the life of this series, as it is expected to contain a total of forty volumes.